You will have heard it said that life’s journey is not about what you achieve, or how or why you do it. It’s about how you make people feel along the way. What does this actually mean?
We talk often about the benefits of becoming a good leader as being life changing for the leader and those they lead.
I would like you to try something.
Think of the person in your life, other than a family member, who has had the most positive impact on you. It could be a friend, school teacher, music teacher, sports coach, manager… whoever. They might have inspired you, made you feel safe, complimented you in just a single sentence that you just happen to remember, helped you to be successful in some way, just been there for you time and again – or just the one time you needed it…. It might be something which at the time you didn’t fully appreciate, but now reflecting on it, you realise how much impact that person really had.
Whatever they did or do, or whoever they are, I am guessing it makes you feel good remembering the impact they had on you. And I am guessing the positivity of their impact was less about showing you how to do something, and more about making you feel good about just being you.
If I was to walk into your offices and ask your team members or colleagues the same question, how many of them would have you in their mind?
What is this ‘feeling good’ thing? I am presuming we all want to feel good in our lives. Almost every pursuit in life is about this, be you a drug addict or Buddhist monk (or both). Everything from Chinese proverbs, the wisdom of dying people, Maslow’s hierarchy to countless neurological studies shows that by making others feel good we make ourselves feel good – in the long term. It’s another clever thing our bodies do to help the prosperity of our species. Sometimes it’s called satisfaction, sometimes it’s called fulfillment, sometimes something else.
Too much giving can result in feeling that we are being taken advantage of, which has the opposite impact on our own welfare – driven by a different neurological response in our brain. Again, this is for our own evolutionary benefit to ensure we strike the right balance with helping and appreciating ourselves, and without this foundation we cannot meaningfully help others.
These perspectives from the leader and a team member show the mutual benefits of good leadership, which are nothing short of life changing or life affirming (affirming – in case your life is pretty exceptional already and you just haven’t realised it yet!).
The leadership development pathway underpinned by using RiddleBox’s RBX Index is designed to deliver this. Strong scores will result in you coming to mind when your current team members are asked to do the same exercise in the future.
Then you’ll know you’ve changed their lives, and probably gone a long way to changing or affirming your own. The financial performance of your organisation will almost certainly mirror these results.
By the way – that person you thought of earlier… they probably don’t know the full extent of the impact they had on you. Let them know you thought of them when asked that question - and see what their reaction is. If they have passed away, try to find a relative or friend of theirs to let them know – the world in 2019 needs more sharing in this way.